Working with ReQall, ReQall Rover and Vlingo.


I’ve been using ReQall, ReQall Rover and Vlingo on my phone for the past week. Technically, I started with Vlingo followed quickly by ReQall and then ReQall Rover for the past couple of days. I’ve been trying to find the perfect app that will give me that Siri like experience on Android. I feel like it’s tantalizingly close but just not quite there yet.Here’s what I’ve been dealing with:

Vlingo is awesome. It does driving directions, find local businesses, send texts and emails, dial by contact name or telephone number, and even tell me the weather for any place I’m interested in. But it’s missing some key components that really shock me. First, you can’t set tasks or reminders. Also, you can’t set calendar appointments. It boggles my mind that they are missing.

ReQall started off as a task manager with voice commands. It’s a very robust and powerful task manager and I really enjoy it. You can tell it a task and it’ll setup location, date and person based upon the contents of the task.  But that’s just what it is, a task manager. It doesn’t do anything else and it isn’t expected to. Does that make it less awesome? No! I feel that it’s the best task manager on Android. It’s especially handy when you show up at a location and it shows you the tasks you have to do at that location – or one nearby.
Then there is ReQall Rover. It’s sort of like Vlingo and ReQall but not. ReQall Rover positions itself as the personal assistant you need. It does all kinds of neat stuff like tell you your upcoming appointments, what the commute is like and pull data from different services to give you info on the person you have a meeting with. What’s more? It’ll speak to you throughout the day giving you a run down of what’s going on with your schedule. It will tell you what’s trending on Twitter around you and what’s hot on Facebook. It’ll let you know if there are any deals taking place on products your interested in and depending on the time of day what restaurant you might be interested in eating at.

With all these features you would think ReQall Rover would be perfect, right? No. I still can’t make it setup an appointment or task for me even though it’s tied into my calendar and the original ReQall. Even though it can tell me what the weather is outside, I can’t ask it what the weather is in another town at random. To be fair, it does know major metro’s like Phoenix. But if I choose something smaller it stumbles.  I asked it for the weather in Conway, Arkansas and it couldn’t tell me. But if I asked it about Little Rock, Arkansas it had the answer. I can tell it to call a particular person who is already in my address book, but I can’t say “Dial, 209-555-1212” for example and have it dial that number like I can with Vlingo. And of course it doesn’t do driving directions or navigation.

ReQall Rover is still really good. I find the technology to be really cool and holds a lot of potential.

It’s very frustrating to have all these pieces of the puzzle but not one app that does them all. Some would smugly say, “then you should have got an iPhone” but I refuse to give in.

Update: I tried out Jeannie after reading a post about it today on Android Appstorm. When I tried to call someone it most often would not recognize the name I spoke and it wouldn’t give me a list of alternatives to choose from. If I opened the app, then went to the menu, closed the menu and then tried to speak to it it wouldn’t be listening. If I closed the app then reopened it, sometimes it wouldn’t be listening. It was just a frustrating app to work with.